Tuesday, April 3rd 2007

Turtle Beach announces 5.1 sound Ear Force HPA2 gaming headphones

Elmsford, NY (PRWEB) April 2, 2007 -- Turtle Beach, a pioneer in digital audio and multi-channel headphone technology, today announced its next generation Ear Force HPA2 gaming headphones. Designed for the serious PC gamer to better discriminate from where audio cues originate, the HPA2 feature true 5.1 surround sound with front, center, surround and subwoofer speaker drivers in each ear cup, powered by a multi-channel in-line amplifier.

While most high-quality stereo headphones only contain a single 40mm driver, the HPA2 feature a 40mm front, a 40mm surround, a 30mm center, and a discrete subwoofer driver in each ear cup. These high-quality and large diameter drivers dramatically improve the positional cues that are crucially important during serious gaming.
"This new model represents a leap forward in discrete-speaker surround-sound headphone technology," said Seth Dotterer, director of marketing for Turtle Beach. "The design of these headphones is the result of listening to our customers - professional and casual gamers - and applying three-decades of audio expertise to deliver state-of-the-art technology at a reasonable price. Between the improved comfort and enhanced surround sound performance - it's hard to imagine any serious gamer ever wanting to use ordinary headphones again."

Since game audio does not have a pre-encoded subwoofer track, the bass of explosions, gunfire, etc... is usually played through front, center, or surround speakers, instead of being directed to a subwoofer designed to play the low-frequency portions of each sound. This flaw results in the bass of the sounds being not as powerful as a pre-encoded movie with a discrete subwoofer channel would sound. Turtle Beach engineers have solved this problem by adding bass enhancement - redesigning the amplifier circuitry to process low frequency signals from all inputs (rather than just the sub-woofer input) and routing it to the sub-woofer inside the ear cup, delivering explosive bass during dramatic episodes in the game.

The HPA2 builds on the innovative technology introduced in the original award-winning HPA, and in addition includes the following improvements designed by the Turtle Beach engineering team to dramatically enhance the surround sound experience:

- A new, acoustically enhanced speaker positioning array - which improves the directionality of front and surround audio cues to create pinpoint-accurate surround-sound positional audio effects.
- Redesigned deep, velvet, ultra-soft ear cushions provide maximum comfort during long gaming sessions.
- Increased tilt range of the ear cups improves the closed-ear fit to allow for different head anatomies.
- Improved removable microphone for game chat with a notched rotator and adjustable boom shaft for close-mouth positioning to enhance voice clarity and reduce room noise interference.

In addition to the in-line multi-channel amplifier, the retail HPA2 package also includes a bonus speaker cable splitter, allowing simultaneous connection of both the HPA2 headphones and external 5.1 speakers to a PC sound card. The HPA2 is compatible with any 5.1 channel sound card or motherboard audio system.

The Ear Force HPA2 has a MSRP of $129.95 and is available at retail outlets nationwide, as well as through the Turtle Beach website and direct sales center (914-345-2255).

For more information, visit the HPA2 Website.
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5 Comments on Turtle Beach announces 5.1 sound Ear Force HPA2 gaming headphones

Bird of Prey
Ya know, I am, in no huge way, a fan of headphones. Now, to speak into a mic, that I dont mind, but headphones, especially those simulating 5.1 surround sound, not a huge fan. However, these look very tempting, especially with the speaker splitter cable ( for 5.1, 6.1 or 7.1 channel surround sound gaming) and the way it handles bass. Bass handling has always been a drawback for me on any type of headphones. I dont even think Razars are close to this. IT would be interesting to see how these perform in real world testing.
Posted on Reply
Well considering I bought a pair of Speedlink Medusa's that I would pretty much GIVE away because I was so unimpressed(they use VERY poor drivers for anything other than the original stereo ones) I may keep an eye on these as at least it appears they are using "matched" drivers" where as the Speedlinks rears and centres sounded like $1.99 headphones compared to the regular stereo drivers so the surround effect of them was more annoying then useful
Posted on Reply
I have a pair of Zalman Surround sound headphones and despite one issue where the cable on the left cup came loose and needed to be sent back for a fixing I've had no problems with them.
VERY useful in CS:Source. But I STILL suck. :p :rolleyes:
Posted on Reply
Ive been using the LTB 5.1 for some time now and I have had no problems and I do get the surround sound while I'm playing games. They seem to work for me...

I would like to try the Turtle Beach ones (HPA2) but I will have to make sure that they are vista compatible.

I am not too sure that the splitter is for 6.1 and 7.1 think all it does is enable you to have your normal speakers hook up and the headphones at the same time. Your PC speakers setup might be 7.1and will still be but headphones will still only be 5.1
Posted on Reply
Heedless Psychic
I'd like to see Turtle Beach come out with a competing product to the X-FI cards, just like back in the good ol days with the SonicFury and its Crystal Soundfusion chip.
Posted on Reply